I finished it just in time for my daughter's wedding celebration on Sunday! She emailed me some photos of dresses she liked and I made it without a pattern. To be sure that I could fit her, she had an idea from something she had read: put on an old t-shirt and wrap her body with duct tape and then cut that off. She mailed it to me and I stuffed it with with newspaper and put it on a hanger so I had a dressmaker dummy to work with:
To make sure I had what she wanted I got some inexpensive fabric of the same weight as the white silk of the dress and made a quick version of the dress a little big and mailed it to her. I had her pin it so it would be the right fit and then mail it back. Then I cut the silk sewed the dress.
She didn't want any fancy work--I really wanted to do some bead work and hand crochet on it, but the only "fancy" work she approved was the silk braid I made around the bodice. So it is really quite a simple design, but she is so beautiful (IMHO) that I could have sewed a burlap sack for her and she would have looked elegant! It has a built in bra and is backless. I put in a long zipper in the back.
It was fun making this. I've been making clothing for her since she was a baby (wow, that was 32 years ago!) I was so honored and pleased that she asked me to make her wedding dress. Of course, it got completed the night before the big day (honest, it would have been done way before, but you know how busy a craftsperson gets!) Anyway, I wanted to have her close by to do the final fitting and get the hem length right and she lives clear across the country on the opposite coast, so it makes sense to wait til the last minute, right?